McFarlane Defends Videogame Violence, but Won’t Mention Sexuality

Multiplayer First’s reported that Todd McFarlane’s Spawn is going to be added to the DLC options for Mortal Kombat 11, which already earned some negativity for the designers’ decision to tone down the sexuality by sharp contrast. And if McFarlane’s defending anything here, it’s the violent content:

 

There are a ton of people like us who see those kinds of things (Mortal Kombat’s Fatalities) and chuckle, you know it’s out there and it is kind of funny, but there are other people who really can’t grasp this concept. These are the people who don’t play video games so they couldn’t understand, and to me, this is offensive to us on a couple of different levels.

There is no documented science that proves that video games correlate to real-life violence. If there was, you know that whenever this conversation comes up, they would wave it in front of our faces, but it doesn’t, so they don’t.

People are capable of partaking in media and not being influenced to do terrible things. Kids know the difference between the ages of 5-7 that what they see on TV isn’t real. Whenever they are watching Looney Tunes, they know there isn’t a 6-foot tall rabbit that can talk, or you know a talking mouse named Mickey.

Somehow, somewhere down the line, when we all get older, people who are between 18 and 25, they all of a sudden become incapable of doing this. I don’t buy that, that’s not how people work.

Just say you don’t like the content. These things are no more harmful than the typical action movie. There are bad people out there sure, psychopaths, who do awful things, but we can’t let them control what we can create.

 

Okay, I’ll say it – I don’t like the graphic content of Mortal Kombat, because I find it – what else? – obscenely disgusting. When I first saw the video game in 1992, I wasn’t even immediately aware it had such gore as decapitation, because the editions I initially came upon were defaulted to remove such options as “fatalities”. But soon enough, as I began seeing more adjusted programs allowing the gore, and read some specialty magazines, I found out, and became far less enthralled. The second game actually came as the last straw, because of the stage where you could knock an opponent onto a row of spikes, viewed directly above the falling character; it was alarmingly sadistic. I won’t say – and don’t know – if violence encourages violence, but it can certainly appeal to it. I think what really offends me about the MK series in retrospect is how it practically encourages a “good guy” to murder another “good guy”. It’s one thing if villains do that to each other, but that those considered “heroes” would do that to each other? It strikes me as a very poor example. The discovery Geoff Johns spent plenty of time with it years before didn’t make things any better.

In any case, how come McFarlane’s willing to defend violent content, but not sexual content? After all the negativity towards sex seen in the last decade, which the MK11 producers succumbed to, you’d think he could at least do that too, but that doesn’t come up here. IMO, that’s a serious weakness. Here’s another item from Quillette about the subject, and when I looked at the comments thread, I noticed the following:

 

Mortal Kombat: A game where characters regularly get their eyeballs pierced and their faces sliced off, but people are offended about female characters wearing a bikini. You couldn’t make this stuff up.

This isn’t about minimizing so-called ‘rape culture’, this is about controlling women and pretending to champion them.

 

But if there were some such culture in MK itself, it would have to be the graphic gore, and how it’s celebrated even remotely as a way for one “goodie” to treat the same. Contrary to McFarlane, I don’t find the gore in these games funny, having looked at and studied a number of video recordings of the gameplay in the past decade. All I see is the product of people desensitized to violence, who don’t even have the courage to question whether society’s gone too far with it.

And if people can partake in media and not be influenced badly by violence, then obviously, the same holds true for sex, whether it’s presented positively or negatively. But we have here another news site that doesn’t have the brains to raise the issue, and that’s an utter dismay.

If McFarlane wants to defend violence, fine, but if he’s leaving the sex issue out in the cold, he’s left the whole subject unbalanced.

 

 

Originally published here

Avi Green

Avi Green

Avi Green was born in Pennsylvania in 1974, and moved to Israel in 1983. He enjoyed reading comics when he was young, the first being Fantastic Four. He maintains a strong belief in the public's right to knowledge and accuracy of facts. He considers himself a conservative-style version of Clark Kent. Follow him on his blog at Four Color Media Monitor or on Twitter at @avigreen1

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